After weeks of seismic exercise with nicely over 50,000 earthquakes, a volcanic eruption has began yesterday night on the Reykjanes peninsula. The eruption began north-east of the city of Grindavík, in a valley known as Geldingadalur close to Fagradalsfjall mountain, about 30 kilometers (19 miles) south from Reykjavík, the capital and largest metropolis of Iceland. Iceland’s Minister of Justice Aslaug Arna Sigurbjornsdottir shared a picture of the evening sky glowing vivid pink, illuminated by the lava.
First photographs taken through the evening and early morning hours by the crew of a Coast Guard helicopter present a 2,6 km lengthy slow-flowing lava move, feed by a 200 to 500 meters (roughly 1,640 ft) lengthy fissure eruption.
The inland of Reykjanes peninsula is sparsely populated, there aren’t any main cities or villages in imminent hazard. The freeway between Reykjavík-Keflavík worldwide airport and the capital space, on the northern shore, has been closed by police in the meanwhile. Airspace in a 5-kilometer radius across the ongoing eruption was closed for unmanned plane and drones to keep away from conflicts with first responders and scientists monitoring the creating state of affairs, and authorities urged individuals to keep away from the eruption website. However, a webcam covers the continuing eruption through live-stream.
The Icelandic Police Department stated it anticipated volcanic fuel air pollution to increase so far as the southern coast of the Ölfus municipality, the place at the very least 2,000 individuals dwell, virtually 50 kilometers (30 miles) away from Reykjavik. The focus of volcanic gases, like sulfur-dioxide, within the air just isn’t poisonous, however could cause irritations in individuals with pre-existing circumstances.
Local media reported that each inbound and outgoing air site visitors had been halted from Keflavik International Airport since this morning, a precautionary step, as volcanic ash can harm aircraft engines. The Icelandic Meteorological Office issued a “code red” warning. A pink warning contains the hazard of plumes of volcanic ash within the greater layers of the environment, probably interfering with flight paths.
Exactly ten years in the past, the Eyjafjallajökull volcano on the southern tip of Iceland erupted, notoriously disrupting around 900,000 flights throughout Europe over a interval of a number of weeks.
Volcanic ash is made up from fragments of rock and glass splitters. When this materials is sucked by the compressor into the engines of a contemporary jet plane, it should soften within the 2,000°C scorching combustion chamber, however shortly re-solidifies on the turbine blades, clogging and finally blocking the engine.
Estimated six eruption columns per 12 months rise excessive sufficient into the stratosphere (15 to 50 kilometers, or 26,000 to 52,000 ft) to hazard air site visitors. In the final thirty years, eighty modern jets were damaged by volcanic ash. Ten airplanes skilled briefly in-flight lack of engine energy, dropping peak quickly.
Volcanic ash types by two processes. Sudden and violent degassing of magma, wealthy in volatiles like carbon-dioxide, water vapor, and different volcanic gases, fragmenting the magma into tiny droplets, or magma encountering water or ice, leading to steam explosions with the identical impact. Volcanism on Iceland is characterised by basaltic magma with low concentrations of risky gases. Eruptions are typically effusive, with spectacular lava fountains and flows, however few explosions.
The eruption of Eyjafjallajökull occurred below a glacier and induced lots of ash, whereas the present eruption within the Geldingadalur valley just isn’t below an ice sheet and as such possible received’t spew out a lot ash. A forecast for ash in the air by the Icelandic Meteorological Office exhibits the volcanic plume shifting eastwards, away from airfields and Reykjavík.
So far, the eruption of Fagradalsfjall – as the new volcano was named – is small and does not cause any concern for potential damage to infrastructure or individuals. No vital quantities of ash have been launched, and in response to statements by Icelandairs, air site visitors will resume quickly.